You are here:

Latin/Translation

Advertisement


Question
Dear Maria,

Can you translate these phrases for me in Latin?

'What you give is what you get'

'Create yourself, your life and your future'

'Grow' - I thought of 'cresce' but I'm not sure if this is correct..

Thanks in advance, you're amazing!

Answer
Hello,

here are the translations of "What you give is what you get" and "Create yourself, your life and your future":

-“Quod dederis recipies” ('What you give is what you get')

-“Tuae ipsius vitae fortunaeque  faber esto” ('Create yourself, your life and your future')

Please note that I have used the 2nd.person singular of the verbs, as I think that both sentences are addressed to only one person (2nd.person singular in Latin), not to many persons (2nd.person plural in Latin).

Also,please see below for grammatical analysis.

As for  'Grow' without any other details, you cannot say  simply “Cresce” (2nd.person singular, present imperative of CRESCO) as it would sound quite strange in Latin.Therefore it would need to know the context where "Grow" must be placed.

Best regards,
Maria
______________________________________________________
GRAMMATICAL ANALYSIS

-What .... is what = QUOD (relative pronoun in the accusative neuter)

-you give  = DEDERIS literally meaning, “ you will have given” for Latin uses the future perfect instead of the present indicative, since the Future Perfect denotes an action as completed in the future. Latin is far more exact than English in distinguishing between mere future action and action completed in the future

-you get = RECIPIES (2nd.person singular,future of RECIPIO, I get). As you can see, Latin uses the future instead of the present because the Future is often required in a subordinate clause in Latin where in English futurity is sufficiently expressed by the main clause.



-Create = FABER ESTO (literally, “Be artisan/maker”) where FABER means "maker/artisan", while ESTO (2nd.person singular, imperative of SUM, I am) means "Be".

-yourself, your life = TUAE  VITAE (literally, "of your life") where TUAE (genitive of the possessive TUUS in the feminine agreed with VITAE) means “ of your”, while VITAE (genitive of the feminine noun VITA, 1st.declension) means “life”

-and your future =FORTUNAEQUE where FORTUNAE (genitive of the feminine noun FORTUNA, 1st.declension) corresponds to  “future”, while the enclitic –QUE attached to the end of FORTUNAE means “and”.

Note that Latin omits “yourself” which is implied in “your life” and uses the noun “fortuna” (fortune)  instead of “future”
Also, I have to point out that my translation is inspired by a quote attributed to Appius Claudius Caecus ("Appius Claudius the Blind," c. 340 BC-273 BC) which reads:“Suae quisque fortunae faber est»( literally, ‘Each man is the maker of his own fortune’).

As you can see, Latin word order  can be variable as Latin is an inflected language where syntactical relationships are indicated by the ending, not by the order of the words.

Latin

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Maria

Expertise

I am an expert in Latin Language and Literature and I'll be glad to answer any questions concerning this matter.

Experience

Over 25 years teaching experience.

Education/Credentials
I received my Ph.D. in Classics (summa cum laude) from Genova University (Italy).

This expert accepts donations:

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.